Nobody Saves the World is a hack-and-slash RPG developed by DrinkBox Studios.
You play as some nobody with amnesia who steals a magic wand that allows you to morph into different forms that each have special abilities. With your new powers, you explore the world, help locals, and find a way to defeat an entity that threatens the world.
Each form has a basic attack and up to three unique, unlockable activated attacks that require mana. Each form also has a unique passive ability, such as doing more damage when your health is low or gaining more mana when breaking objects. As you level, you will be able to swap different passives and active abilities in different forms, allowing you to create a suite of powers that best fits the play style you want. Combat is often frantic but rewards clever use of different abilities and using the tight controls to maneuver around your enemies. Dungeons are procedurally generated, so every time you die or leave, the layout will be different but keep its themes.
Unfortunately, the leveling system works against playing how you want. Each time you unlock a new form, you have to perform specific tasks with that form to level it. When you finish leveling it and have the freedom to experiment, you need to switch forms and start leveling another form to gain wands.
You need wands to enter the dungeons that move the main story forward, and the most effective way to gain new wands is to level each form. Combat itself doesn’t give you much experience, so playing with a form and set of powers you like becomes trivial because you’re not going to advance much while playing that way.
You can play the game solo or with a friend using online co-op. In co-op, both players have access to all of the forms, quests, and abilities of the higher-level player. They also share quest progression, so if one player levels a form, it affects the form for both players. Co-op doesn’t add anything different, so both players will need to enjoy the base experience to enjoy playing it together.
NPCs are enjoyable, displaying unique personalities and offering dialog that made me laugh out loud several times. Even simple fetch quests often had a fun story or silly character to meet that makes them more than the task itself.
The art style is consistent and perfectly matches the tone and humor. Unfortunately, factors such as the color palette and the number of enemies and effects on screen make it easy to lose track of your character during fights. It’s even harder to see your character when you’re in a tiny form, such as a mouse or turtle or if you’re playing co-op.
Nobody Saves the World is interesting but held back by counterintuitive design. Progressing means constantly doing side quests or sticking to a narrow path rather than embracing the creativity of mixing forms and powers. However, after 10 hours playing solo and three in co-op, it still managed to offer some enjoyable experiences. If it looks interesting to you and you have the patience to move at a slower pace and do a lot of side quests, it might be worth checking out.
Nobody Saves the World is available January 18 for $24.99 on PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S and is available on Game Pass.
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